Thursday, December 8, 2016

Eastern Pondhawk

Eastern Pondhawks from 2016. The first two photos, both taken on 1 June, are from Carleton College’s Lower Arboretum here in Rice County, Minnesota. The first one is male, the second, female.
The third photo is of an immature male taken at the Savannah National Wildlife Refuge in Jasper County, South Carolina on 24 March. The last image is from St Marks National Wildlife Refuge, Wakulla County, Florida on 23 March.
Considering their wide range, almost all of the eastern United States east of the Rockies, I am surprised that local, isolated populations have not evolved into distinct species. On the other hand, Eastern Pondhawks are abundant and not very particular in their habitat selection. Almost any slow moving or still water will suffice.

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